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‘King the Land’ producers apologize for show's depiction of Arab prince

By Lee Si-jin

Published : July 13, 2023 - 17:40

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JTBC's official apology in Arabic (JTBC) JTBC's official apology in Arabic (JTBC)

The production company behind JTBC’s romantic comedy “King the Land” issued an official apology on Wednesday for its cultural insensitivity.

The creators -- Npio Entertainment, BY4M Studio and SLL -- expressed their sincere apology to the viewers in an official apology letter posted on the show's website in Korean, English and Arabic.

“We had no intention of caricaturing or distorting any particular country or culture,” the production companies said in the letter.

Recognizing their lack of understanding, experience and consideration for other cultures, the companies promised to review the controversial scenes and to take appropriate measures.

“We will do our best to create content that can be enjoyed by anyone regardless of where they are from and what kind of culture they have,” the production studios added.

The series came under fire over its character Prince Samir, with criticisms directed at the show’s misleading depiction of Arab culture.

After “King the Land” aired its latest episode on July 9, both local and global viewers expressed their disappointment, saying the character was depicted as a guillible and rich prince who seems to solve problems with his money. They further noted that the role was played by a non-Arab actor, Anupam Tripathi from India.

A screenshot from A screenshot from "King the Land" with Prince Samir, played by Indian actor Anupam Tripathi. (JTBC)

The 16-part “King the Land” released eight episodes as of July 9. The series is available on Netflix and local streaming service Tving.